Cardio workouts definitely help achieve fat loss, since you can burn a descent number of calories in high-energy class, on long distance runs, or swimming. Focusing on cardio only to meet fat loss goals may lead to missing out on a major way to fuel your progress.
Strength training is highly recognized for its benefit of changing body composition, with an included boost to fat loss. Plus, you do not have to pick up weights to get there. There is a vast variety of body weight exercises that use gravity as resistance.
Why work against resistance? Here are 3 big reasons:
Improves Your Metabolic Rate
When in a fat loss state with the help of only cardio, you will lose both fat and muscle. This brings about a small problem since less muscle mass leads to a slower metabolic rate—you are not burning calories as efficiently as possible.
Less muscle=the slower the rate
Cardio can stimulate muscle growth to some degree, the effect is not as pronounced as it would be with strength training. As you increase your metabolic rate with higher muscle mass, your body burns more calories at rest.
Broadens Your Calorie Burn
Strength training leads to tiny tears in the muscle. These tears, upon healing, lead to bigger muscles. Weight training forces your body to injure its muscles to a minor degree. It takes about 48 hours to repair the injuries in which you will be burning more calories to aid the process.
Although during cardio you can burn many calories; you are able to burn more calories post resistance training due to the “afterburn effect”. The afterburn effect can last 24-48 hours.
Rids Belly Fat
Since you cannot spot reduce when it comes to fat loss you would think that focusing on calorie burn overall would not matter when it comes to lowering belly fat.
Would a weight training session bring about better results compared to an aerobics class? Yes! In comparison to aerobic exercise, weight training has the strongest association with lowered belly fat.
Even higher levels of belly fat can be achieved with a combination of both high intensity weigh training and moderate intensity cardio.